ESGE is a multifaceted society and over the past couple of years we have established several new working groups. This month we spoke to Dr Cesare Hassan, the international affairs working group chair.What are the main goals of the working group?
We aim to develop long-term partnerships with African endoscopists. This initiative will also help to address existing barriers currently preventing the optimal development of GI endoscopy within these countries. To achieve these goals we have formed a close collaboration with WEO. Why did you want to get involved with this working group?
I have always found that knowledge transfer and working with colleagues from different countries very interesting. The scope of this project is very large and there are lot of opportunities to work closely with our African counterparts. Together we will strive to improve endoscopy provision and help to build a strong and robust GI community within Africa. How do the working group activities fit into the overarching goals of ESGE?
They are in line with the educational and training goals of our society and will help expand the utilization of ESGE training material outside Europe. The working group also enriches our collaboration with WEO which is ongoing in several areas. What have been the main achievements of the working group to date?
Our first goal was to better understand the current indications and barriers to GI-endoscopy in Africa. Our epidemiological survey identified critical barriers such as lack of training centres, especially for advanced procedures, and a shortage of medical professionals. We then defined, together with WEO, a list of criteria for identifying ESGE training centres in Africa. This resulted in a position statement which was published in Endoscopy International Open (EIO). We also created a specific methodology for adapting ESGE guidelines in resource-sensitive areas. This resulted in the first ESGE cascade guideline on non-variceal upper GI hemorrhage which also appeared in EIO. What are the next big challenges for the WG?
We feel there is an overwhelming need and expectations especially from young African endoscopists to participate in educational and research activities. Our challenge is not to disappoint them!
Please let me thank all the IAWG working-group for their intensive dedication, and especially Alanna Ebigbo and John Karstensen for finalizing our projects!Partnership with African Countries: European Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ESGE) – Position Statement
Hassan, L. Aabakken, A. Ebigbo et al.,
READ MORENonvariceal upper gastrointestinal hemorrhage: European Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ESGE) Cascade Guideline
G. Karstensen, A. Ebigbo, L. Aabakken et al.,